- Jesse Spector of the NY Daily News: “The Stars have not asked Brad to waive his no-trade clause, and at this point in time, he has no intention of doing so,” agent Pat Morris told the Daily News when told of a source saying the Maple Leafs could make a deal with the Stars. “We’re still pointing toward July 1.” According to the source, “It’s legit” and “Toronto is desperate for a star like this.” The source added that the Maple Leafs felt close enough to a deal, that they have other deals in place to clear up some cap space. Richards has a no trade clause and his agent sees no reason to do a deal without letting other teams bid for his services. Morris said they could possibly consider a deal, but hadn’t heard of any trade that Nieuwendyk was working on.
- Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News: According to a source, Richards received offers from the Stars at the trade deadline of either Joe Thornton’s or Patrick Marleau’s contract. Thornton received a 3 year deal worth $21 million, a $7 million cap hit. Marleau received a 4 year contract worth $27.6 million, a $6.9 million cap hit. Tom Gaglardi’s offer to buy the Stars could be finished by the end of the week. All sides would then have to have “pre-packaged bankruptcy hearing,” which could take 30 days or longer to complete.
- Mike Heika of the Dallas Morning News: Nieuwendyk doesn’t have the Stars budget for next season yet, but expects it to be higher than the $47 million from last season. They currently have 17 players under contract for approximately $38 million.
“I think our first hurdle is to find out what our budget will be, and we should know that soon,” Nieuwendyk said. “But by [the lenders] giving us the ability to go out and sign Brad, it says that our payroll will be higher, so we’ll have some money to play with.
“We’re looking at free agency, we have our list and the guys initially we want to target. There’s money to be spent and players to go get.”
The Stars could use a scoring winger or two, and a top defenseman.
“I think we need a top-six forward,” Nieuwendyk said. “Maybe we get there through trade, too. I think the opportunity through trade is probably a more likely scenario than overpaying through free agency.”
- Michael Arace of the Columbus Dispatch: The Blue Jackets need to send a message to fans, and make a move to improve the team. GM Scott Howson is dangling the 8th overall pick in this year’s draft for immediate help. They need to make a bold move to acquire top line forward or defenseman. Will he find a center for Rick Nash? Does he include Jake Voracek in a deal?
- Katie Carrera of the Washington Post: Semyon Varlamov is a RFA and the Capitals could use his upside as part of a trade this season. The Caps have 2 other young goalies in Michal Neuvirth and Braden Holtby. Varlamov could be number 1 goalie in the NHL, but he has had injury issues in the past. He’s said he’d like to stay in Washington, his agent has said that KHL teams are interested.
- Don Brennan of the Ottawa Sun: Reports are saying that Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson will have back surgery, recovery time is said to be 4 to 6 weeks. Alfredsson appeared in only 54 games this past season as he was bothered by back issues. The Sens are “99% certain” that they will keep the 6th overall pick in the draft. They will likely pick one of Sean Couturier, Ryan Strome, Mika Zibanejad, Gabriel Landeskog, Jonathan Huberdeau or possibly Dougie Hamilton.